Real Estate News


    • 4 Home Wellness Features From Around the World

      8 March 2021

      Although it might be a relatively new trend in luxury real estate, many of the wellness features found in today’s homes are inspired by ancient rituals from all parts of the world. After all, it should come as no surprise that humans have been embracing health and relaxation for centuries. Here are a few of today’s most coveted wellness features that come from across the globe.

      Turkish Hammam
      Historically, Turkish-style baths, known as hammams, are public places where people can go for a cleansing steam bath. These days, however, plenty of luxury homeowners have built their own private hammams at home, often with authentic mosaic tiles and natural stone slabs, as well as hot and cold immersion pools. The enchanting aesthetic makes for a unique experience that’s sure to please those who seek to relax the mind and body.

      Finnish Sauna
      There are many types of saunas found all over the world, but perhaps none is more prevalent than the Finnish sauna, which has been a part of their culture for thousands of years. Today, they are often built with cedar walls and benches, along with a wood stove used for heating a pile of rocks. Regularly using a sauna has been linked to myriad health benefits, including improved blood pressure and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, which could explain why so many luxury homes have one.

      Halotherapy
      Himalayan salt rooms have become increasingly popular in hotels, resorts and private residences in recent years, but the practice of breathing salty air, known as halotherapy, has been around in Eastern Europe for over a century. From skin conditions to respiratory illnesses, this unique wellness treatment is believed to help with a wide variety of ailments, as well as reduce stress and anxiety.

      Ofuro Tub
      When it’s time to unwind at the end of a long day, there’s nothing like taking a hot bath in a Japanese style tub, known as an ofuro. These deep, wooden tubs are not typically used for washing, which is why it’s customary to clean oneself before entering. Rather, they are part of a ritualistic practice that’s focused on promoting relaxation.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Fast, Flavorful Meals When You’re Short on Time

      8 March 2021

      (Family Features) Quality meals don’t have to drain hours from your day; satisfying taste is possible in just minutes when you have a few strategies that can help make meal prep easier and the results more enjoyable.

      Eat better with veggies. If eating better is your goal, explore veggie-based recipes that are hearty and filled with nutrients and vitamins. This Brown and Wild Rice Bowl with Veggie Burger is perfect for a meatless Monday or any other day when you need a fast, filling and flavorful meal in short order. If you don’t have veggie burgers at home, or simply prefer a meat-based option, a cooked frozen beef patty is a good time-saving alternative. 

      Make simple swaps for variety. When you find a dish that’s easy and tasty, you may find yourself falling back on the same thing again and again. Prevent taste bud boredom by mixing up your ingredients. You can transform a rice-based recipe by changing up the veggies, cheese, dressing and other toppings. Try pickled jalapenos for spice. Add corn if you like things sweet. Swap a creamy dressing with a zesty vinaigrette for fewer calories and a whole new taste.

      Shop for convenience. Takeout may let you skip prep time completely, but you can easily make versions of many favorite to-go meals at home in just a few minutes. This Beef and Broccoli Garlic Rice uses perfectly portioned Minute Ready to Serve microwavable rice cups that help you put together a delicious lunch or dinner without measuring or overeating. Choosing products like portion-controlled rice and other ready-to-serve ingredients can help shave time off your prep work.

      Tempt your taste buds with more convenient meal ideas at minuterice.com.

      Brown and Wild Rice Bowl with Veggie Burger
      Prep time: 5 minutes
      Servings: 1

      1 cup Minute Ready to Serve Brown and Wild Rice
      1 precooked veggie burger patty
      1/2 cup shredded lettuce
      1/2 cup halved grape tomatoes
      2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
      2 tablespoons ranch dressing
       
      Prepare rice according to package directions.
       
      Break veggie burgers into large chunks and place in a small, microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 60-90 seconds, or until the veggie burger is heated through.
       
      Toss together rice and veggie burger. Top with lettuce, tomatoes and cheese. Drizzle with ranch dressing.

      Beef and Broccoli Garlic Rice
      Prep time: 5 minutes
      Servings: 1

      1 cup Minute Ready to Serve Garlic and Olive Oil Jasmine Rice
      1/2 cup fresh broccoli florets
      1/2 cup sliced red bell pepper
      2 tablespoons diced water chestnuts
      3 ounces cooked beef, sliced into strips
      3 tablespoons teriyaki glaze
      soy sauce (optional)

      Heat rice according to package directions.

      In a large, microwave-safe bowl, combine broccoli, bell pepper and water chestnuts. Microwave on high 1 minute. Add beef and microwave on high for 1 minute.

      Stir in glaze and rice. Top with soy sauce, if desired.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Simple Ways to Teach Your Kids About Eco-Friendly Living

      8 March 2021

      Teaching your children about caring for the environment and creating eco-friendly habits can start at any age. The following activities provide simple ways for parents to teach kids about eco-friendly living while keeping them engaged and having fun.

      Go Plogging Together. Plogging, the act of picking up litter while jogging, originated in Sweden and quickly gained popularity in countries all around the world. A simple and effective way to keep your area beautiful while staying active, it’s an activity that is simple for children to join in on. Try it the next time your family hits your favorite trail or beach. Add more excitement by seeing who can collect the most litter in an allotted time.

      Practice Recycling and Try Composting. The average family throws away a lot of useful items. Avoid needlessly contributing to the trash heap and teach your children to spot items that can be easily recycled. Consider furthering your eco-conscious lessons by starting a backyard compost pile for your garden.

      Reuse Everyday Items in Crafts. Milk cartons, soda cans and jar lids can all be used to make creative and adorable crafts. For your youngest family members, getting them involved in reusing items at an early age will give them a headstart and a more innate insight into how to creatively use items that would otherwise become trash.

      Adopt an Animal. Many wildlife rehabilitation programs allow the public to symbolically adopt an animal. Whether the funds go directly to that particular animal’s recovery and rehabilitation or are devoted to protecting that species’ habitat for future generations, your family can learn more about your favorite animal and financially support it in the process. 

      Teaching kids about eco-friendly living doesn’t need to be boring or full of do’s and don’ts. Instead, make it fun and educational for the whole family. 

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Kitchen Staples Helpful for Heart Health

      5 March 2021

      (Family Features) Taking care of your heart health requires a commitment to the right routines and smart decisions, such as adopting a heart healthy diet. Foods you might already have in your kitchen can offer powerful vitamins, minerals and beneficial plant compounds that may help contribute to heart health. 

      Decades of research shows that each 8-ounce serving of 100% orange juice, such as Florida Orange Juice, is packed with key nutrients and valuable plant compounds, which may play a beneficial role in helping lower blood pressure and other risk factors for heart disease. Consider these additional heart health benefits of 100% orange juice: 

      While many people associate vitamin C with its ability to help promote a healthy immune system, it’s also been shown to support cardiovascular health. Orange juice is an excellent source of vitamin C providing more than 100% of the recommended daily value in an 8-ounce glass. 

      In several research studies, higher intakes of the flavonoids typically found in citrus were associated with reduced risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke. 

      In one 8-ounce serving, 100% orange juice provides 10% of the daily value of potassium, which is an electrolyte that helps maintain fluid balance affecting blood pressure. Diets containing foods that are good sources of potassium and low in sodium may reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. 

      Some studies found folate and vitamin B6, both water-soluble vitamins, may help protect against heart disease by lowering homocysteine levels in the blood, an amino acid believed to cause damage to the arteries and increase the risk of blood clots when elevated. One 8-ounce glass of orange juice contains 15% of the daily value of folate and 8% of the daily value of vitamin B6. 

      “Drinking Florida Orange Juice is not only delicious, it delivers a powerful combination of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds,” said Dr. Rosa Walsh, director of scientific research at the Florida Department of Citrus. “From helping to reduce hypertension to fighting inflammation, it is an excellent choice to include in a heart-healthy diet.” 

      You can add the heart health benefits of 100% orange juice to your diet with the powerfully nutritious punch of Orange Juice Shrimp Quinoa Bowls, the perfect mixture of textures with tangy, spicy and sweet flavors. Or start the day strong with a Florida Sunshine Grapefruit Smoothie for a breakfast beverage that requires just a few minutes of prep and blending. 

      Find more heart healthy inspiration at floridacitrus.org. 

      Orange Juice Shrimp Quinoa Bowls
      Servings: 2

      2 cups water
      1 cup quinoa
      1 cup Florida Orange Juice
      1 tablespoon hot sauce
      1 tablespoon honey
      1 tablespoon soy sauce
      6 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
      2 tablespoons lime juice
      1 tablespoon white miso
      1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
      1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
      1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
      1 bell pepper, diced
      1 English cucumber, sliced into half moons
      3 scallions, sliced
      1 avocado, sliced
      1 teaspoon sesame seeds
      2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

      In the pot, bring water to boil. Add quinoa, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Fluff with fork.

      In a bowl, whisk orange juice, hot sauce, honey, soy sauce, 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, lime juice and miso. Remove half and set aside.

      Add shrimp to the remaining half and marinate 15 minutes.

      Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add remaining oil.

      Season shrimp with salt and pepper then add shrimp to wok and saute, cooking approximately 2 minutes per side until pink and cooked through.

      Place 1/2 cup quinoa in a bowl and top with bell pepper, cucumber, scallions, avocado and shrimp.

      Drizzle with dressing that was set aside and garnish with sesame seeds and cilantro.

      Florida Sunshine Grapefruit Smoothie
      Servings: 1

      1 cup Florida Orange Juice
      1/2 cup Florida Grapefruit Juice
      1 ripe banana
      1/2 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
      1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

      In a blender, blend orange juice, grapefruit juice, banana, yogurt and vanilla extract until smooth. Serve immediately.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • What is an Expired Listing?

      5 March 2021

      If you sign a contract with a real estate agent to get help selling your home, the contract will stipulate that the agent will represent you for a period of time, typically six months to a year. If your house isn’t sold within that time frame, your listing on the multiple listing service (MLS) will expire. At that point, you can work with your agent to figure out why your home didn’t sell and what to do about it, or you can switch to a different agent.

      Did You Set Your Price Too High? 
      Real estate prices go up and down. Numerous local factors, such as property taxes, crime rates, school quality and whether a house is close to businesses, parks and other amenities, can influence home prices. The price for one house will also depend on how much comparable homes in the same area have sold for recently. 

      A real estate agent should take all that information into consideration and set a reasonable asking price. In some cases, however, an agent tells a homeowner that a house can sell for a high amount to get the owner as a client, but the house lingers on the market because the asking price is too high. It’s also common for a homeowner who is influenced by emotion to insist on setting a price that is unreasonable, given the current real estate market in the area.

      If your listing has expired, it’s time for you and your real estate agent to have a frank discussion about whether the asking price was too high. If your agent tells you that other houses selling for the amount you asked are larger than yours, in better condition, or have amenities that yours doesn’t, take that to heart. You may not want to reduce the price, but it may be necessary to attract a buyer. 

      Does Your House Need Repairs or Updates?
      Your agent may recommend that you make repairs or remodel outdated rooms before you relist your home. You may be able to make some fairly simple changes, such as cleaning up the yard, replacing the front door and installing new hardware in the kitchen, or you may have to spend more money to update the kitchen or bathrooms. 

      What Did Prospective Buyers Say?
      If a handful of people expressed interest in your home but decided not to buy it, their feedback may be helpful, especially if there was a consistent theme. If several people said they thought the house was outdated, poorly maintained, or overpriced, that means you will have to address those concerns if you want to find a buyer.

      Should You Change Agents? 
      If your agent overpriced your home, didn’t do a good job of marketing, or didn’t provide a high level of service, you may want to relist your home with a different agent after your contract with the first individual expires. Don’t be too quick to blame your agent, however. Consider other possible reasons why your house didn’t sell.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.